Team Onboarding Guide

Getting started with GitHub Team

Here, you’ll find everything you need to know about using GitHub Team—from improving software development practices to ensuring a smooth rollout for everyone in your organization. Let’s get started.

In this guide, you’ll also learn how to:

  • Start collaborating using GitHub Team
  • Develop securely and effectively manage access to your organization
  • Get support

Pro tips:

  • Check out the GitHub Glossary for more about Git and GitHub-specific terms we use across our sites and documentation.

Part one: Getting set up

Now that you're ready to collaborate with your team on GitHub, you'll need to set up an organization that your users will be a part of. You'll also need to set up billing for your organization.


  1. Setting up and understanding organizations

    Organizations are shared accounts where businesses and open-source projects can collaborate across many projects at once. Owners and administrators can manage member access to the organization's data and projects with sophisticated security and administrative features.

    After you invite your team to collaborate as an organization, you'll need to decide who will own and help manage your organization’s account. Users with the Owner role have the power to make any change to the account, including designating other owners, adding and removing organization members, and viewing and editing billing information.

    Read more about permission levels for your organization and repositories owned by user accounts.

Part two: Adding members and setting up your team

Working together helps teams build and ship better software, faster. But successful collaboration relies on a few important factors: communication, contribution, and administration. GitHub Team gives you the tools to manage them all in the way that works best for your organization.


  1. Organizing people for successful collaboration

    Your GitHub hierarchy is made up of individual users and teams within your organization. The policies you set for your users and teams will determine how users can collaborate and communicate on GitHub. You'll also want to set up appropriate permissions and roles for management of your organization.

    Start by grouping individual users within your organization into teams. Not sure where to begin? Create teams that reflect your current organizational structure or working groups. Then decide which GitHub repositories your teams will have access to. Repositories are where your teams will perform code reviews, give feedback on each other’s progress, and discuss ongoing work.

    We know that teams change roles and take on new projects all the time. You can create new teams and manage repository permissions whenever you need to.

    Read more about teams and repositories.

  2. Gaining team insights

    Team insights help you understand what’s happening within your organization and why. With GitHub Team, you can see a summary of all repository activity through Pulse using the Insights tab. Pulse shows how often your teams are closing issues, merging pull requests, and completing work—making it easy to identify patterns (or potential problems) in your workflow.

  3. Finding support and training help

    Onboarding a new software platform is exciting—and we want you to be able to start building together from day one. Have a question that isn’t answered here? Get in touch with the GitHub Support Team.

    Looking for additional training? Our friendly GitHub Learning Lab bot helps developers learn and apply new skills through short, hands-on projects.

    Read more about Learning Lab for Organizations.

Part three: Working together

With GitHub Team, your team can work together on projects from anywhere. Features like issues, branches, commits, and pull requests make it possible to discuss and review code—no matter where you are. Plus, you can manage projects and releases right inside GitHub, without using outside project management tools.


  1. Understanding the GitHub Flow

    The GitHub Flow is a lightweight, branch-based workflow that helps you make changes and deploy code quickly. Using branches, commits, and pull requests, you can suggest changes to your code, ask for feedback, leave comments, and review changes before they’re accepted. Think something needs a second look? Tag users anytime, and they’ll get an instant notification.

    Read more about the GitHub Flow, mentioning users and teams, and code review.

  2. Reviewing and discussing work

    Along with branches, commits, and pull requests, issues also help you track and manage work on GitHub. Create a new issue, pin important issues to the top of your projects, or collaborate using issues that have already been opened by your team. Issues (and pull requests) add up fast, so be sure to use unique labels to categorize and prioritize your work.

    Read more about issues and adding labels to issues and pull requests.

  3. Planning and tracking work

    Project managers and developers can coordinate, track, and update their work—all in the same place. Create project boards on GitHub with associated issues, pull requests, and notes, then use milestones to track your progress toward team goals. Once your project is ready for the world to see, package up your software, release notes, and links to binary files in a single release.

    Read more about project boards, milestones, and releases.

Part four: Security

Security is a team effort, from the first line of code to shipping a new application. You can increase the security of your account through specific policies, including 2-factor authentication (2FA), protected branches, and automated code security checks such as token scanning.


  1. 2-factor authentication

    Two-factor authentication, or 2FA, is an extra layer of security used when logging into websites or apps. With 2FA, you have to log in with your username and password and provide another form of authentication that only you know or have access to. Organization owners can require organization members, outside collaborators, and billing managers to enable two-factor authentication for their personal accounts, making it harder for malicious actors to access an organization's repositories and settings.

    Read more about requiring 2-factor authentication.

  2. Setting up secure workflows

    Use protected branches to ensure that no one can make irrevocable changes to a repository—meaning they won’t be able to merge branches or pull requests without passing certain security checks. These checks include required status checks, which all code must pass before it can be merged into a protected branch. You can set up branch protections, required status checks, and branch restrictions in your organization’s settings.

    Read more about protected branches, required status checks, and branch restrictions.

  3. Using secure development features

    Build securely with GitHub’s built-in secure development features, like security alerts for vulnerabilities and token scanning. Get notified if any of your projects have a dependency with a known vulnerability, including suggested fixes from the GitHub community. Token scanning also ensures that your tokens and keys are never accidentally committed and exposed in a public repository.

    Required status checks can also help your team stick to and enforce your organization’s compliance standards. Use these checks and others to automate your compliance workflows, verify commits before they’re accepted, and make sure your team builds using repeatable, trackable processes.

    Read more about security alerts for vulnerabilities, token scanning, and required status checks.

Part five: Integrating with GitHub

Chances are, your team already knows and loves GitHub, but there are other tools we know you rely on to build every day too. Whether you’re integrating legacy solutions or discovering new applications in GitHub Marketplace, it’s easy to find and connect with the tools your teams need to build at their best.


  1. Automating with GitHub Actions

    Can’t find the tool your team needs for a certain task? You don’t have to build your own app. Instead, use GitHub Actions: automated workflows that run on the GitHub platform. Actions are triggered by specific events, like a push, issue, or release. Once you've created an action, you can even make it available in GitHub Marketplace for others to use.

    Read more about GitHub Actions.

  2. Integrating apps with GitHub

    GitHub integrates with over 1,000 third-party applications, including top industry tools like CircleCI, Jenkins, Jira, and ZenHub. Build with the tools your team already relies on, or discover something new without setting up multiple accounts or payment methods. Install apps in seconds on an organization or user account, then give them access to the repositories of your choice.

    Read more about tools that integrate with GitHub and pre-built integrations.

  3. Using the GitHub API

    Create your own tools using the same API that we use to build GitHub. Set up your individual GitHub App with built-in webhooks, run checks against code changes, and develop all kinds of integrations using the full suite of GitHub APIs.

    Read more about GitHub Apps, the GraphQL API, Checks API, Deployments API, and webhooks.

Part six: Getting support

Congrats, you’re officially ready to start building on GitHub! 🎉 Before you kick off your first project, check out our top tools and resources for updates, support, and some extra inspiration. Have questions or need help? Here are all the places you can find us.


  1. Staying connected with GitHub

    Looking for the latest GitHub releases or want to know what’s happening in the GitHub universe? Find out what’s new on the general GitHub Blog or GitHub Engineering Blog, as well as our social media channels. For helpful tools and tricks on using GitHub at work, we’ve put together free ebooks, webinars, checklists, and more on the GitHub Resources hub.

    Check out the GitHub Blog, GitHub Changelog, GitHub Engineering Blog, GitHub Resources, and find GitHub on Twitter and YouTube.

  2. Educating your team with GitHub Learning Lab

    Teach your team how to use GitHub—without leaving the platform. GitHub Learning Lab helps your developers level up their skills with the help of our friendly Learning Lab bot. Build customized, private courses, improve productivity, and give everyone on your team the tools they need to build better software.

    Read more about Learning Lab.